In case you can’t get enough Jurassic Park movies, you can expect a biotech firm’s plans to hybridize endangered Asian elephants with long-extinct woolly mammoths using splicing. genes and other exotic techniques.
Expect a long movie, the team are hoping to have calves after six years and we don’t think a theme park is happening. The claim is that gigantic traits will help elephants reclaim the tundra, but we can’t help but think this is just an excuse to revive an extinct animal. If you read the popular newspaper articles, one wonders if the ecological mission claimed by the company is realistic. However, we can’t deny that it would be cool to bring an animal back from extinction – sort of.
We are not DNA wizards, so we only partially understand what is on offer. Apparently, the skin cells of a modern elephant will serve as the basis for accepting the extracted mammoth DNA. It might sound far fetched, but it turns out that the mammoth lived much more recently than is usually thought. When they die in their natural freezing environment, they are often well preserved.
Once the genes are spliced in place, a surrogate elephant will carry the embryo to term. The hope is that the improved breed can crossbreed more with natural species, although with the gestation and maturity times of the elephants it will take a very long time to bear fruit.
So, what do you think ? Are we going to face a disaster at the cinema level? Will we have laboratory curiosity creatures? Will he save the tundra? Let us know what you think in the comments.
The manipulation of DNA has gone from moon-level technology to easily accessible technology in a very short period of time. In particular, CRISPR changes everything and is both exciting and scary about what it puts in the hands of almost everyone.